If Osteoporosis is diagnosed, doctors normally recommend;
- Important lifestyle changes
- Medication to stop further bone loss and prevent fractures
- Increasing your calcium and Magnesium intake through your daily diet or supplements
- Increasing the amount of exercise each week
- Quitting smoking
- Decreasing your alcohol intake
- Increasing your exposure to limited sunlight to correct any vitamin D deficiencies, or with supplementation
Osteoporosis medications work by making the bone cells that break down bone ineffective, while leaving the cells that form bone alone. This reduces the amount of bone lost, so that a net gain in bone density occurs over time.
There are several types of medication:
- Bisphosphonates, ie Fosamax, Actonel
- Strontium Ranelate, ie Protos
- Selective Oestrogen Receptor Modulators (SERMs),ie Evista
The hormones testosterone, oestrogen and progesterone are also actively involved in the making and unmaking of bone. Testosterone and progesterone build bone, while oestrogen appears to indirectly slow bone loss.
Conventional medicine has traditionally prescribed HRT to prevent or treat Osteoporosis.
Oestrogen works by slowing down the osteoclasts. These are cells which break down old bone.
It is now considered that the use of synthetic HRT is probably not appropriate for treatment of Osteoporosis due to the risks associated with oestrogen and breast cancer.
If using Bio identical hormones new evidence suggests natural or bio-identical Progesterone may be a safer alternative for Osteoporosis prevention in menopause. Progesterone, it is believed, works by stimulating osteoblastic activity. These are the cells that build new bone.
Bio identical Testosterone replacement is thought to help prevent Osteoporosis by also stimulating osteoblastic activity.
It is my opinion that hormones are most definitely important in prevention of Osteoporosis which is associated with hormone decline after menopause.
Long term use of Bio identical Progesterone and Testosterone in menopause is probably safe. I would not suggest using Bio identical oestrogen for treatment or prevention of Osteoporosis due to possible risks of Breast cancer.
Bio identical hormones, specifically progesterone and testosterone may help in prevention of Osteoporosis in menopause. Once Osteoporosis is established, a combination of these hormones with one of the above mentioned medications is my preferred option for treatment.